Facebook. Twitter. YouTube. LinkedIn. Google+. Pinterest. And the list goes on. With so many options available today, it’s easy to experience social media overwhelm.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I’m a big fan of social media and how it can help you generate buzz and develop your business. But it can be overwhelming, even addictive for some. With new social sites popping up every day, how do you make the most of the opportunities social media provides and still have time to run your business?
Here’s my advice:
1. Be choosy. You don’t have to participate actively on every available site. Pick a few sites that best match your goals and your target audience and invest your time there. Don’t feel guilty if you don’t have a presence on Tumblr, Digg, or Quora just because “everybody” else does.
2. Check your web analytics. Review your web stats to see where your traffic is coming from and focus on the social sites that bring the most traffic. A great free tool that helps you analyze your web traffic is Google Analytics. You might be surprised when you view your results. For example, I didn’t expect much when I created a Xing profile, but I generate a lot of traffic from this site even though I update it infrequently.
3. Schedule time for social networking. Whether you update your social accounts every morning for 15 minutes or spend an hour a week scheduling in advance, having a schedule helps you set limits. Your schedule doesn’t have to be set in stone, however.
4. Categorize sites based on effectiveness. If you discover that Facebook generates far better results for you than Twitter, for example, invest more time on Facebook and update Twitter less frequently.
5. Consider automation. Using tools like HootSuite or Buffer to update multiple social sites at once enables you to increase visibility with little effort. Avoid overdoing automation, however. Choose wisely when determining what to automate and remember that human interaction is still the core of social media success.
6. Get focused to get results. Just because you spend hours a week on social sites doesn’t mean you’re going to generate the results you want. You need to understand the best ways to use each site so that you spend your time effectively. Fifteen minutes of strategic social networking can be worth far more than several hours of aimless social surfing.